Ischadra, Grandmother of Assassins

ischadra-grandmother-of-assassins[1]A horrendous and scary adversary…

By Megan Robertson

Publisher’s blurb: “A horrifying new Infamous Adversary for the Pathfinder RPG!

“She wears the guise of a doll, a child-like construct of porcelain and wire, but cold sentience seemingly teems in her empty eye sockets. She stares with an eerie mute silence, giving you a moment for your brain to adjust to what it is seeing. A doll given life, bestowed with an ancient weapon of vengeance and purpose. With an inhuman leap her blade buries deep in your throat. As the last of your lifeblood spills her words take form in your mind, and you know why the Grandmother of Assassins has come.”

Megan’s review

This is the stuff nightmares are made of… a large doll come to murderous life, communicating telepathically with its victims even as it sends them into the hereafter.

Opening with a short piece of fiction, spookily written in the first person from the standpoint of Ischadra herself, there’s a lot packed into these pages: fiction, the assassin herself, her companions, plot hooks, new monsters and more. The story itself is chilling, nightmarish, melding revenge and misplaced trust into true horror. There’s also a neat children’s rhyme you can insert into the traditional playground fare of your world wherever this nasty little assassin operates.

This is followed by comprehensive notes on Ischadra, including a detailed stat block which is (if you are reading onscreen) hyperlinked to the Pathfinder SRD website. Her backstory is equally comprehensive, and if you want to have assassination a major threat in your world you could do a lot worse than adopt much of what is written here as well as incorporate Ischadra herself into your campaign. This section rounds out with suggestions for how Ishadra could advance along with your campaign: initially presented at 12th level, she is also given at 15th and 18th level so that she may ‘grow’ as your characters do. HeroLab files are provided for those who use it, another handy feature of this product.

Next come some plothooks for how she may initially feature in your game. Once there, she’ll likely be back… at least, unless the characters somehow manage to destroy her. Any of them provides plenty of scope for on-going adventure, and it would be possible for you to weave more than one into an on-going assassination-based plotline. Characters wishing to undertake research are provided with copious snippets of lore that they can discover depending on their skills and die rolls, and you are also provided with a ‘supporting cast’ of various cohorts and associates who may also be encountered when Ischadra is around.

For those who like new stuff, Ishadra’s personal weapon and her soulstone are detailed, along with the Spectral Host – have fun terrifying unwary characters with them! There is also a new deity, appropriately the God of Murder, along with details of his faith, and an organisation of assassins, the Order of the Ebon Hand, who couple religious motivation with a keen eye for cash and a thoroughly unpleasant pleasure in their work! Prime adversaries to send chills down anyone’s spine… The work rounds out with sample members, both rank & file and leadership, for you to use.

There’s a lot here for anyone who likes an edge of horror, or who needs access to competent assassins who are, shall we say, more than mere mercenary technicians.

Book Details:
Authors: Tom “Qadim” Phillips, Brian “Necroblivion” Berg, and Rick “The Drunken Mime” Cox
Publishers’ Reference: TPKIA006
ISBN: n/a
PDF, 26 pages
Date: June 2012

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